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Old 06-25-2011, 03:17 PM
Dan
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Hi,

I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?

I look into the documentation of rEFIT and it looks like a "hack" to
emulate the BIOS. It is a pity that there is not a cleaner way to run
linux on a Mac

Do you have a good experience running Debian in a Mac?

Thanks,
Dan


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Old 06-25-2011, 05:56 PM
lee
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Dan <ganchya@gmail.com> writes:

> I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
> mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?

A while ago, I looked briefly into installing Debian on a Mac because
being confronted with their MacOS feels like having traveled back in
time about 20 years. I found out that it's "difficult", to say the
least, and decided not to pursue it any further.

You might be better off asking which laptops are best suited to run your
favourite OS and get one that's suited well.


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Old 06-26-2011, 06:21 PM
Jerome BENOIT
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Hello List:

My boxes are Apple boxes running Debian (stable):
a MacMiniServer and a MacBookPro 15" (MacBookPro6,2).

Let say that the installation may not be so straightforward for Debian newbies,
second, for recent Apple, you may install a recent kernel and recent graphics support.


hth,
Jerome


On 25/06/11 19:56, lee wrote:

Dan<ganchya@gmail.com> writes:


I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?


A while ago, I looked briefly into installing Debian on a Mac because
being confronted with their MacOS feels like having traveled back in
time about 20 years. I found out that it's "difficult", to say the
least, and decided not to pursue it any further.

You might be better off asking which laptops are best suited to run your
favourite OS and get one that's suited well.





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Old 06-27-2011, 07:57 AM
Andreas Weber
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

On 2011-06-25 17:17, Dan wrote:
> I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
> mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?

Of course!

> I look into the documentation of rEFIT and it looks like a "hack" to
> emulate the BIOS. It is a pity that there is not a cleaner way to run
> linux on a Mac
>
> Do you have a good experience running Debian in a Mac?

Yes, and a gazillion other user do, too.

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/MacBookPro

And the same goes for iMac, MacMini in all variants and so on. The small
tweaks eventually needed also apply for Debian.

I would have bought other hardware than from Apple, but nothing compares
to it in terms of quality IMO. Or can you tell me which other
manufacturer does hardware like that? Looks good, superb energy
consumption, recycable, extremely silent... just the OS is not my thing. ;-)

šndu


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Old 06-27-2011, 01:12 PM
Torstein Krause Johansen
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Hi there,

On 25 June 2011 23:17, Dan <ganchya@gmail.com> wrote:

> I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
> mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?

Now that's a good question! I got my first Mac in January because I
wanted to check out what all the fuzz was about and to see what's down
to hardware and what's down to Mac OS when praise is given to Macs
that they are "so wonderful".

Some things that I really like about the Macbook Pro, is the build
quality, the microphone, the sound & the screen. Looking at your
holiday photos using a Mac makes the colours look brighter and people
you talk to on Skype may tell you that you sound better :-)

Now, the question: would I do it again? I am really not sure.
Considering the price tag, I think the next time I'll pick another
laptop where I can get better specs for the price of the Macbook Pro.

> Do you have a good experience running Debian in a Mac?

I've written down what I did to get things running here:
http://tkj.freeshell.org/debian/debian-on-macbook-pro-7.1/ There were
some tricky corners and one notable difference from the Ubuntu
recipes, but all in all it was a fairly smooth ride and much easier
than I thought it would be.

After sorting the different things out, the only real annoyance I've
still got, is that my xmodmap keep resetting after "some time". I
don't know why, but every so often (5 minutes? 10 minutes? half an
hour, I don't know), my re-mapped keyboard (most notably, I want Meta
instead of the Mac key), jumps back to "normal". Also, I found the
multi touch driver to be pretty buggy, but perhaps a recent update
(the last months) have remedied this.

Apart from that, Debian runs great on my Mac.

Cheers,

-Torstein


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Old 06-28-2011, 05:20 PM
Dan
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

On Mon, Jun 27, 2011 at 9:12 AM, Torstein Krause Johansen <tkj@vizrt.com> wrote:
> Hi there,
>
> On 25 June 2011 23:17, Dan <ganchya@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will
>> mainly run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?
>
> Now that's a good question! I got my first Mac in January because I
> wanted to check out what all the fuzz was about and to see what's down
> to hardware and what's down to Mac OS when praise is given to Macs
> that they are "so wonderful".
>
> Some things that I really like about the Macbook Pro, is the build
> quality, the microphone, the sound & the screen. Looking at your
> holiday photos using a Mac makes the colours look brighter and people
> you talk to on Skype may tell you that you sound better :-)
>
> Now, the question: would I do it again? I am really not sure.
> Considering the price tag, I think the next time I'll pick another
> laptop where I can get better specs for the price of the Macbook Pro.
>
>> Do you have a good experience running Debian in a Mac?
>
> I've written down what I did to get things running here:
> http://tkj.freeshell.org/debian/debian-on-macbook-pro-7.1/ There were
> some tricky corners and one notable difference from the Ubuntu
> recipes, but all in all it was a fairly smooth ride and much easier
> than I thought it would be.
>
> After sorting the different things out, the only real annoyance I've
> still got, is that my xmodmap keep resetting after "some time". I
> don't know why, but every so often (5 minutes? 10 minutes? half an
> hour, I don't know), my re-mapped keyboard (most notably, I want Meta
> instead of the Mac key), jumps back to "normal". Also, I found the
> multi touch driver to be pretty buggy, but perhaps a recent update
> (the last months) have remedied this.
>
> Apart from that, Debian runs great on my Mac.
>

Hi All,

Thanks a lot for your answers.

Torstein: Thanks a lot for your explanations and your wiki (Installing
debian on a Macbook) It is very clear and useful. Maybe you could ask
the writer of the Debian wiki to put a link to your page. Indeed it is
updated to 7,1
http://wiki.debian.org/MacBook

Lee: Why did yo say that their MacOS feels like having traveled back
in time about 20 years?

I still have to think about it. I love their design and build quality.
But I do not like that their hardware is so closed. I read somewhere
that linux has to boot in BIOS compatibility mode because Apple do not
release everything about their EFI loader.

Thanks,
Dan


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Old 06-28-2011, 06:08 PM
Andreas Weber
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

On 2011-06-28 19:20, Dan wrote:
> But I do not like that their hardware is so closed. I read somewhere
> that linux has to boot in BIOS compatibility mode because Apple do
> not release everything about their EFI loader.

EFI has been invented by Intel and will be used by lots of manufacturers
in the near future. Maybe your current machine uses it and you don't
know it? ;-)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unified_Extensible_Firmware_Interface#Platforms_us ing_EFI.2FUEFI

EFI is nothing strange to Linux, elilo supports it since long and Grub
does, too.

http://grub.enbug.org/TestingOnEFI

The use of rEFIt is just very easy, this is why so many are using it.
And having the MacOS in a small partition on your disk doesn't hurt IMO.
On the other hand it can be very useful, e.g. when Apple rolls out EFI
upgrades for you Mac.

HTH, šndu


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Old 06-28-2011, 06:12 PM
lee
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Dan <ganchya@gmail.com> writes:

> Lee: Why did yo say that their MacOS feels like having traveled back
> in time about 20 years?

Because it feels like that ... About 20 years ago, I had an Atari ST.
The GUI MacOS presents you with looks and feels very similar to that.
What you can do is also very limited, which reminds me of how limited
the Atari was back then, compared to nowadays computers. Just look at
what you have available when you install KDE or gnome and compare that
to the crap you got when you've installed MacOS. Even the keyboard the
Mac comes with is missing some keys, and some characters like the pipe
sign are missing. Try to press Ctrl on that keyboard, that key is
missing altogether. Try to press the right or middle mouse button on
the mouse the Mac comes with: It has only one button. Try to change the
size of the fonts used in menus: It's not possible. Try to get virtual
desktops: It's possible but useless because you can't make it so that
you can just move the mouse pointer over the edge of the screen to get
to the adjacent desktop, which is *must have* feature for any window
manager I'm using. Try to quit a program: The window seems to be
closed, yet the program is apparently still running, and you end up
never to actually quit a program until you turn off the computer, which
I usually don't do. Try to minimize a window and then to get it back: I
couldn't figure out how to do that. I could go on like this for a
while. To me, it sucks, and it's just 20 years back.

> I still have to think about it. I love their design and build quality.
> But I do not like that their hardware is so closed.

Isn't that an issue with any laptop? Try to install a TV card or a
couple of harddisks --- it's out of the question to save data to only
one single disk, and they use 2.5" disks which weren't available in
sizes of at least 2TB each last time I checked. Try to install a fast
graphics card, a good sound card, or try to install more memory ...
After a while, you need to buy a new, expensive battery and may find
that they aren't available anymore after two or three years. They don't
have good keyboards, many don't even have a number pad.

So what's the point in getting a laptop? I can see that it's useful
when you actually do carry it around. When you do that, they don't last
long because they aren't built to be mobile devices. They aren't even
up to the temperature requirements, and from what people have been
telling me, they are way too easy to break. Add to that the problem
that they can be easily stolen, which requires you to take precautions
against a thief accessing your data. Consider that they are usually
slower than non-laptops because the batteries are supposed to last a
while.

Then look at the prices, if they matter to you Unless you really do
need a laptop, don't buy one. If I would need one, I'd get a cheap one
sufficient to use as a remote terminal to my computer at home.


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Old 07-03-2011, 01:12 PM
Jerome BENOIT
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

Hello,

On 03/07/11 14:19, lee wrote:

Jerome BENOIT<jgmb65@rezozer.net> writes:


The very first stage is to install refit ( http://refit.sourceforge.net/ ) from Mac OS X.
And then Debian can be installed quite as usual.
For more details see http://wiki.debian.org/MacBookPro


Thanks for the info It seems once you get refit working, you could
use a Debian installer CD and get it installed. However, the Mac sucks
too much to try: You can't install more then two disks,


what do you mean by disk ?

and you can't

install any of them in the right orientation.


I am getting more confused here:
are you dealing with a MacBookPro or a MacPro ?

I have another disk I

could use (if the Mac supports SATA disks), but since it's always been
installed in the right orientation, it's too likely to fail.


Your issues seem rather as hardware issues.

Jerome


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Old 07-07-2011, 12:37 PM
Jon Dowland
 
Default Experience of Debian in a Macbook pro

On Sat, Jun 25, 2011 at 11:17:55AM -0400, Dan wrote:
> I would like to buy a laptop. And I love the Macbooks pro. But I will mainly
> run Debian. Is it worthy to buy a mac to run Debian?

Former Debian developer and current kernel hacker Matthew Garrett advises
against it: <http://mjg59.livejournal.com/136710.html>


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